Eva Longoria’s Childhood Turned Into a Real-Life Version of ‘The Ugly Duckling’ After Her Family Began Calling Her “Ugly, Dark One”

Eva Longoria's journey to embracing inner beauty despite being the only dark One in the family

Eva Longoria’s Childhood Turned Into a Real-Life Version of ‘The Ugly Duckling’ After Her Family Began Calling Her “Ugly, Dark One”


  • Eva Longoria's childhood was marked by feeling like the odd one out among her fair-skinned siblings.
  • Longoria was labelled as La prieta fea by her family, echoing the tale of The Ugly Duckling.
  • Eva Longoria's rise to prominence included becoming a L'Oréal ambassador in 2005, affirming her position as a beauty icon.
  • However, Longoria initially aspired to be a sports trainer rather than pursuing acting.
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Eva Longoria, renowned for her captivating beauty and significant influence in Hollywood, embodies a journey marked by resilience and triumph. Behind the veil of glamour lies a poignant narrative of self-discovery and perseverance. Despite her prominence today, few are aware of the inner turmoil she endured during her formative years.

Eva Longoria
Eva Longoria

Amidst siblings adorned with fair complexions, she stood as the anomaly, her dark skin and hair setting her apart. In the tender corridors of her childhood, she couldn’t help but feel like the proverbial ugly duckling amidst a flock of swans.

However, as the years unfolded, Longoria’s journey transcended the confines of personal struggle, blossoming into an emblem of empowerment and inspiration.


Eva Longoria’s Journey as the ‘Ugly Duck’ in a Fair-Skinned Family

Eva Longoria
Eva Longoria

Desperate Housewives star Eva Longoria‘s childhood was far from flawless. Despite her eventual success in Hollywood, she endured a tumultuous journey marked by profound mental struggles, particularly concerning her identity within her own family.

As the only dark-skinned member, she grappled with feelings of inadequacy and being perceived as different. Longoria’s upbringing eerily mirrored the classic tale of The Ugly Duckling, as she was often labeled as the ugly one by her family.

In a recent interview with Amanda Hirsch for Not Skinny But Not Fat, the superstar bravely shared how the socially accepted beauty of her mother and sisters profoundly impacted her self-esteem. Longoria told,


“All my three sisters were blonde. And I was the only one who came out with black hair, dark skin, dark eyes. My sisters have these beautiful hazel eyes. My mom is a ‘Güera’ — which is the white one. They call her ‘Tia Güera’ because she’s so light-skinned. “So I grew up as ‘La prieta fea,’ which means ‘the ugly dark one.’”

Longoria recounted instances where her mother referred to her as the ugly dark one, highlighting the painful dynamics within her family. Despite these hurtful experiences, Longoria clarified that such remarks were not intended to be racially derogatory.
Name-calling based on race was unfortunately normalized within Latino culture.

Eva Longoria further stated in Not Skinny But Not Fat,

“It’s a term of endearment, but when people would walk up to my mom and go, ‘your daughters are so beautiful. And who’s this?’ I’d be like, ‘I’m one of them,’” 

However, Longoria’s Hollywood journey serves as a testament to her resilience and determination to overcome her childhood struggles. Despite the odds, she transcended societal expectations and forged her path to success.


Longoria’s ascent to fame culminated in her becoming a L’Oréal ambassador in 2005, solidifying her status as a beauty icon. Longoria’s accolades extend beyond her ambassadorship, as she was previously crowned Miss Corpus Christi in March 1998, showcasing her early prowess in the realm of beauty and grace.

Eva Longoria’s Desire to Embrace Wit over Appearance

Eva Longoria
Eva Longoria

At 48 years old, Eva Longoria stands as a beacon of beauty and success, revered as one of the most stunning women globally. However, in her youth, Longoria felt inadequate compared to her fair-skinned siblings, yet she found comfort in humor.

Longoria told Amanda Hirsch,


“So I wasn’t the pretty one. Like I grew up as not the pretty one. So there was a conscious decision when I was young to be the funny one. And I really think that has lent itself to my personality.”

Longoria’s early years were not defined by a reliance on her looks; instead, she understood the necessity of hard work to carve out her path in life. Rejecting the notion of aspiring to be an actress, she initially pursued a different avenue.

Eva Longoria told Wales Online,

“I didn’t grow up wanting this at all. I wanted to be a sports trainer, and I actually was an aerobics instructor. Then I won a scholarship to come to LA and compete in a modeling and talent competition and was amazed when I won it. I had never acted before in my life and won the acting category. I thought, “I wonder what this is about? I’ll see what happens.” 

During her time at university, Longoria discovered a passion for the performing arts, appearing on stage in various theater productions. From then, Longoria’s exposure to the stage ignited a spark within her, leading her down an unexpected yet fulfilling path.


Written by Pritha Roy

Articles Published: 75

Pritha Roy, a seasoned content writer with two years of expertise in captivating feature writing, is currently pursuing a master's degree in mass communication and journalism at Sister Nivedita University. Prior to this, she honed her skills at Aajkaal, a distinguished Bengali newspaper organization. Pritha excels in crafting engaging and audience-centric content that resonates deeply with readers.